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Thread: Casting bullets in a subdivision

  1. #1
    Boolit Man
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
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    76

    Casting bullets in a subdivision

    I've wanted to cast bullets for a LONG time and now am running critically low.

    I live in a neighborhood, lot size 0.27 acre, too many left leaning neighbors. I don't like answering questions; when I go to the range I sneak my guns in the car.

    I have four 5 gallon buckets of lead wheel weights. From these, I need to make ingots and then cast. I need to buy a turkey fryer but have everything else.

    I have a wife whose olfactory senses are superb and can smell anything off.

    What are my options? I really cannot do this outside because of prying neighbors and really cannot do inside because of smell even in the basement, or so I believe. Also, for safety reasons I would prefer to cast outside.

    Any thoughts or ideas? The solution, of course, is a property with land, but that's a costly proposition around these parts.

    Living in suburbia just plain stinks!

  2. #2
    Boolit Master nvbirdman's Avatar
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    Apr 2005
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    Fallon, Nv.
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    If you lived near me, I'd tell you to bring your crap over here some weekend. Do you have any shooting friends that live a bit outside the city?

  3. #3
    Boolit Master poppy42's Avatar
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    Apr 2017
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    Virginia
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    Easy. Sort and clean your wheel weights remove anything other than the wheel weights. Smelts on a breezy day. Use a little wax and sawdust for flux. Little bit of practice it smell any worse than a bad barbecue. I do it all the time
    Long, Wide, Deep, and Without Hesitation!

  4. #4
    Boolit Man
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    Bartlesville, OK
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    Do you have a garage? It works great there for me when I lived on a similar lot, but even now, on 5 acres, I still utilize the garage. Odor there are are not as noticable and you can always open the door to air out. My two pesos.

  5. #5
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    JonB_in_Glencoe's Avatar
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    First, Don't even think of smelting WW inside, that will be extremely dangerous.

    Does your neighborhood have a HOA? If not, I wouldn't worry about the neighbors. They will probably not even have a clue as to what you are doing...If they come over and ask, you can always tell them you are doing a recycling project for the Boy Scouts or something. Have you smelted WW before? There are tricks to keep the smoke and smell down.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    “If someone has a gun and is trying to kill you, it would be reasonable to shoot back with your own gun.”
    ― The Dalai Lama, Seattle Times, May 2001

  6. #6
    Boolit Buddy
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    Mar 2008
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    Maybe you could trade your buckets of wheel weights for ready to use ingots. Wouldn't be a straight across deal, but it would save you the hassle of smelting.

  7. #7
    Boolit Buddy
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    Jul 2016
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    I live half mile east of downtown Austin... 0.018 acre. I cast in garage with door wide open. I have had neighbors tell me my guns kill people. F’ them. Just cast away. None of their business.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master BNE's Avatar
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    Mar 2013
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    Smelt outside.

    Cast in a garage if you have one. (Door open or have a duct with a fan.)

    Most neighbors won’t bother to ask. We should not be afraid to enjoy our freedoms.

    This advice is worth everything you paid for it!

    BNE.
    I'm a Happy Clinger.

  9. #9
    Boolit Master
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    If you are going to be smelting those COWW and making ingots, you could consider some Wood shavings from mesquite or other smoking wood. And for flux, you might lay some bacon on the melt surface that can cook and burn down. You will need to dispose of the clips and dross, but that could go with the trash I suppose, if you do not care to put it in containers and drop off at a recycle place.

    Early mornings will probably work better for you than afternoons or evenings when more folks are out.

  10. #10
    Boolit Buddy
    Huskerguy's Avatar
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    I am in the process of melting several 5 gallon buckets of range lead and it stinks like crazy. The last two days have been extremely windy which helps keep the smoke away but carries quite a ways down the street. I live on a corner lot with a fenced in area so people can't see it but some kids were walking by and made comments about the smell.

    You might consider, if you have such a thing, I have a portable air purifier and put it in front of the drifting smoke. You could also BBQ at the same time or burn some wood in a pit. With a turkey frier, 5 gallons won't take very long.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master
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    I don't worry about it . It is not illegal or immoral .
    I have cast on patios and in garages in subdivisions .
    Last edited by onelight; 03-09-2020 at 12:37 AM.

  12. #12
    Boolit Buddy
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    Smaller batches will mean less smoke. Bacon fat gives off a different smell than candle wax gives off. More like cooking meat. Always have a plumbers torch handy to light off your flux, way less smoke when it flames up.

    Sneak up on it! Try five pounds. If you get away with that then keep going. I smelt in town. Older neighborhood. No one says anything. I smelt about 30 to 40 pounds at a time.

    JM

  13. #13
    Boolit Master Drew P's Avatar
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    Tell them you make “fishing weights”. Nobody will ever suspect a thing, since most fishermen don’t come back with fish anyway.

  14. #14
    Boolit Master
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    I used to do it in the back yard right at dusk , I would get it all set up in the evening then start the pot melting as it got dark have some sort of light and I used a scrap board that I would put some water on , do not dump ingots till they are firm , I would sit mold on damp board till they solidified then tip over on another damp piece of scrap lumber , yes it will smell if that is a problem I would go to woods away from peoples prying eyes and melt where no one smells or sees it , I live in town still and I melt in my backyard now in daylight or dark , it is my yard and I do try to not have a smoke screen going , but most time it is about the same as sitting around the fire pit , which I do on occasion .

  15. #15
    Boolit Master

    Rcmaveric's Avatar
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    I live in an apartment in urban Jacksonville, Fl. I melt the wheel weights in the parking lot. Makes for nice conversational peice with kids and neighbors. If the kids want to watch I tell them to get their parents and stay 25 yards away and upwind. Got the cops called on me once (twice but only once for lead). I was doing a sulfur experiment and some reported I was I cooking meth. Had a nice conversation with cops. Made rocket motor fuel by accident and burnt a hole in the pavement (apartments doesnt need to know that was me).

    If you are worried about neighbors, I am the only nationality and only republican in my complex. When curiosity gets the best of people we dont talk politics. We talk science and prepping. Plus it is totally legal what you are doing. Neighbors can whine and complain but that's its.

    As far as smell, as long as you aren't fluxing with motor oil or sulfur it isnt bad. Hardly noticable. Talk to the wife about a trial run. Worse case scenario find an abandoned parking lot. I have 2 abandoned parking lots near my house and one is kind of secluded. Cops can show up and investigate the strange guy cooking stinky stuff. All they can do is ask you to leave or stop.

    Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk
    "Speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far."
    ~Theodore Roosevelt~

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    If you're in STL, you can come on over to my place. Got a turkey fryer, propane, and muffin tins.

  17. #17
    Boolit Master

    Winger Ed.'s Avatar
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    Do all the smoky/stinking stuff outside and late at night during the times of year everybody has their doors & windows closed.
    It wasn't playing the blame game, finding fault, and complaining about every little thing that made America great.
    It was God, guns, and guts.


    Never pick a fight with old people.
    If they don't think they can win it: They'll just kill you.

  18. #18
    Boolit Buddy
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    So Cal
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    I used to use a couple of sheets of drywall set up at angles just outside my garage door. This blocked neighbors from being able see what I was doing. The only time I was concerned was when smoke came up from fluxing. You don't need to answer nosy questions unless you want to.

  19. #19
    Boolit Buddy
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    Feb 2020
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    Probably best to keep the neighbors in the dark.

    I had a buddy over doing some reloading in the garage. One of my most liberal neighbors approached my buddy when I was in the house and asked what we were doing. I had not warned him about her so he answered directly... 30 minutes later I had the EPD Bomb Squad in my house.

    You may want to consider some kind of forced air ventilation. A while back I built something resembling a lamnar hood. I used ducting, duct fan and a carbon filter that I found at an indoor garden store. I had the 8" duct inlet was positioned about 6" behind the lead pot and exited the rear of the enclosure and attached to the fan. Then the fan outlet duct ran outside and was capped with a carbon filter.

    It moved a lot of air, reduced the smell significantly and was fairly quiet.

  20. #20
    Boolit Buddy
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    Atlanta-ish
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    What about a nearby park for your smelting? As for smelting indoors, lots of people do it here and use ventilators. I'm sure you can figure something out.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check